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The role of CRM is changing as enterprises wrestle with the challenge of delivering a better customer experience across both digital and physical channels.


  • The underlying challenge is to remain relevant to customers by delivering experiences as well as products and services that match or exceed their expectations and doing so through customers’ preferred means, whether that be digital channels or physical locations such as a store, their home, or their place of work.

Features and Benefits

  • Provides guidance on what is happening in the CRM software market.
  • Advises enterprises on developing omnichannel strategies.

Key questions answered

  • What is happening in the CRM software environment and how might this affect omnichannel strategy?
  • What characteristics should firms consider when developing omnichannel customer engagement capabilities?

Table of contents


  • Catalyst
  • Ovum view
  • Key messages


  • Recommendations for enterprises
  • Recommendations for vendors

Business trends and technology enablers

  • Deliver adaptive omnichannel capabilities to maintain and increase customer relevance

Modular CRM is morphing into an orchestration platform for omnichannel customer engagement

  • Defining omnichannel customer engagement
  • The three key challenges
  • The 11 elements
  • The increasingly modular design of CRM means it is suited to omnichannel customer engagement

The battle between CRM vendors and contact center incumbents for the central role is heating up

  • Top CRM vendors are staking their claims for omnichannel
  • The contact center is no longer the sole domain of traditional contact center incumbents
  • Journey mapping is moving from static to adaptive
  • Static journey maps are only a proxy for reality
  • Customer journey mapping analytics can support adaptive journey mapping
  • The first omnichannel dashboards will appear in 2016

Sales force automation is evolving into sales resource optimization

  • Focusing sales resources to optimize results
  • Territory optimization relies on better opportunity coverage
  • Embedded analytics enable firms to improve coverage and create fairer territories
  • With more sophisticated territory planning tools, coverage moves from art to science

IoT is extending CRM insight and speeding up reaction times

  • IoT provides a vital source of insight to CRM to improve the customer experience

Robotic process automation is eliminating non-value-add activities

  • Freeing employees for key tasks
  • Routine tasks that lend themselves to RPA
  • EY identifies five potential benefits of RPA

The European ruling on Safe Harbor adds complexity to data storage practices

  • Data privacy will be the top concern in 2016
  • Competitive positioning between major vendors and specialists will dominate in 2016
  • CRM is not what it used to be
  • Demarcation lines will blur in 2016


  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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